OPAL Outdoor Play and Learning
Exciting playtimes are here!
As part of our school development during this academic year – we have as you know embarked on an exciting project which will help us to improve the quality of play for all of our children. Working with an organisation called OPAL (Outdoor play and learning), we have started looking at how best we can provide a range of challenging and fun opportunities at playtimes and lunchtimes.
Play has changed hugely over the last 25 years as the world has become a much busier and more technologically developed place. Children sadly sometimes miss out on the physical, creative side of play that is so important to their development. OPAL has been designed to give children the sense of freedom that perhaps we all enjoyed as children but that the modern world sometimes denies us.
We are committed to ensuring quality play opportunities are available to all of our children at Manor Park Primary School as we believe that play is essential for children’s physical, emotional, social and intellectual development.
What would we like to see at Manor Park?
We would like play in our school to become a freely chosen activity which your child will find satisfying and enjoyable. It will provide them with an opportunity to use their intuition, be physically active, be creative, make their own decisions, be outdoors and overall have fun.
What does this all mean?
How we play during lunch times is changing. Children are now offered new challenges and allowed to play with a range of new equipment and resources. They are allowed access to different parts of the school such as the field if they have suitable footwear and will be allowed to play outdoors in most weathers so you may find your child maybe a little dirtier when they arrive home. The new ways to play will be introduced slowly and we will of course work closely with all children on developing their resilience and risk assessment skills.
We have a play policy and long term plan to continue to develop play and our school lunch time staff (play leaders) are being trained and are positively motivated to support play. We feel this is an exciting time at Manor Park and look forward to sharing all of our updates with you.